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August 13, 2009


Notso Young

So, can we really get into any kind of root rot problems if we use non-organic "soil", say, Turface? Also, as an aside, I've read that pines MUST have micorhiza (sp?) to survive - does this mean pines MUST be in an organic soil or is this just mystique? It seems to me that hard-fired inorganic media is the way to go in bonsai and that this pretty much eliminates root rot.

Thanks for letting us all know how you are doing.


As long as the water can drain, root rot should not be an issue with substances like clean turface (no fines). However, this assumes that all the other growing conditions are acceptable. It is still possible to get pathogenic root rot, but it is a lot less likely.

I will circumvent the question of whether pines NEED myc by stating that YOU don't have to ADD it to the soil or to the tree. In the first place, chances are slim that you would get the right one. Second, pines seem to find what they need on their own. Myc spores are pervasive. Third, high fertility rates are counterproductive for the growth of myc and usually end up killing it. The pines don't care, they keep growing just fine.

Pines can grow fine in a totally inorganic soil with an inorganic fertilizer regime. However, it is a safer and better route to use at least some organic fertilizer with an all inorganic soil to create a better environment for microorganisms that break down nitrogen products into forms that are more usable to the tree.


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